A few years ago, Krisjan Berzins arrived at his office, and an employee commented that he hadn’t seen Berzins around in a while. The employee caught Berzins off guard so his response was defensive, and Berzins realized later that it was the wrong way to react.
“The proper response would have been, ‘I trust you so much that I don’t need to be here every minute, looking over your shoulder. I have faith in you to get the job done.’ And that would have been a great way to totally disarm it. But I didn’t react that way.”
Lesson learned for Berzins, who doesn’t want to sound arrogant, but after years of trial and error of delegating, he’s settled into a good spot as president and CEO. His normal workday looks different than it did a decade ago. Here’s Berzins’ average day.
I am generally in the office 2 to 3 times per week. If I’m going into the office, I’m up around 5 a.m. and in the office by 6:15 a.m. If I’m working from home, I’m probably up by 6:30 a.m.
Obviously, my alarm clock is on my phone, so, once I turn the alarm off, I’m generally looking at any recent text messages or emails that came in overnight. I’m just looking for something that might be urgent. Otherwise, I’m not getting into business right away.
I love coffee. I am a bit of a coffee snob, so I enjoy trying different types of roasts and different types of coffees. So that’s the first thing, I’ll generally have two cups and then I switch over to water for the rest of the day.
Commute is anywhere from 15 to 20 minutes. On satellite radio, I do listen to Fox Business and that’s almost exclusively what I listen to in my truck. It’s a lot more business talk than it is political talk.
First thing I do when I get in, I like to stay down downstairs and greet as many people as I can with a smile on my face and an elbow bump at this point. I might find someone that recently had a baby or they had a family member that was ill and ask them how they’re doing. I’ll probably have a quick chat with our operations manager and then I’ll head upstairs and get out of her way.
I am pretty removed from the day-to-day operations, but I do handle recruiting for the most part. I focus my energy on strategy. For financial analysis, we do have a CFO, but I review finances on a monthly basis with her and our financial consultant.
I have a workout routine where I’m working out early afternoon, generally three times a week. That also keeps me from having a big lunch, because I know that I’m going to be working out. And if I wanted to go out and have a big lunch, I will occasionally take staff. I would much rather do that than have some formal meeting in the conference room or in my office.
If I am at the office, I’m out the door generally by 12:30 p.m. or so, and then I’m working out and putting two to three hours in at my home office. Sometimes it’s longer than that, it just depends.
As corny as it sounds, we still eat together as a family. No phones at the table and we discuss whatever we feel like discussing.
I love to grill. So, I’ll probably grill three, sometimes four times a week. I’m an audiophile, so I have the Bluetooth speakers out there on the deck and music and the grill going. That’s my sanctuary for 20 to 30 minutes.
I’m actually guilty of letting the hours creep into evening before I unplug. I’m not a big television guy.
I do have one other hobby: It’s called iRacing. I have a whole rig down in the basement that has the racing seat and the custom wheel and pedals. I race a lot of the guys virtually. It has become very popular now that COVID has changed things. I also race my vintage BMW four or five times a year at racetracks around the country.
I wish I went to bed earlier, but I would say generally, I go probably around 10:30 p.m.